About the author  ⁄ Doug Jenkins

1/14/15 – 5:32 A.M.

A Rawson man pleaded guilty to multiple rape charges this week. The Courier reports 56-year-old Gary Martin was in court Monday. He pleaded guilty to four first-degree felony counts of rape. The victim in the case was an 11-year-old girl.

The incidents took place between October 24 and December 29 of 2013 in Union Township and in Findlay.

Martin faces 15 to 35 years in prison. Sentencing will take place March 5.

MORE: The Courier

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1/14/15 – 5:25 A.M.

Putnam County residents are being encouraged to recycle more glass. The Putnam County Sentinel reports the county commissioners are pushing the effort. The county received a $100,000 grant from the Ohio EPA last year to increase glass recycling efforts.

Putnam County Administrator Jack Betscher tells the newspaper that officials are still working on ways to increase glass collection. Right now residents can take their glass to a recycling center at the Ottawa Walmart. The county is also going to start contacting area restaurants to solicit their glass.

MORE: Putnam County Sentinel

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1/14/15 – 5:08 A.M.

The city of Findlay is looking to upgrade its fleet of safety service vehicles. City council will vote on buying new police cars and a new fire engine at its January 20 meeting. The cost for seven new police vehicles will be a little less than $233,500. A new fire truck could cost $580,000.

Service-Service Director Paul Schmelzer wants to move forward with the project as quickly as possible. He says the sooner the city makes its bids, the more cost-effective it can be.

The new police cars would replace four patrol cars and three detective cars. The fire department would replace Engine 4, which is a 1997 model pumper truck.

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1/14/15 – 4:58 A.M.

After a month of debate between city officials, retired Findlay Fire Chief Tom Lonyo could be getting compensation for unused sick time. The Courier reports the City Council Appropriations Committee talked about the issue at their Tuesday meeting. However, the group tabled the subject again when it was all said and done.

Findlay Law Director Don Rasmussen says the group is waiting on an approval letter from the state before moving forward. That could take a few weeks.

The debate on the issue has centered on if Lonyo was old enough to retire from his position. City law requires an employee to be 48 before they can retire, but state law would allow Lonyo to retire at 46 according to Rasmussen.

Lonyo left the fire department to take a safety-related job with Marathon Petroleum.

MORE: The Courier

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1/13/15 – 11:24 A.M.

Two people were injured in a one-car crash near Mt. Cory Monday afternoon. The State Highway Patrol reports the accident happened on County Road 16 in Blanchard Township around 1:20 p.m.

55-year-old Sherry Harris was driving north when she lost control of her car near County Road 78. The car went off the road and hit a utility pole.

Harris and her passenger, 30-year-old Brittany Grisby, were taken to Blanchard Valley Hospital for treatment of non-life-threatening injuries. Both were wearing their seatbelts. Harris was cited for failure to control.

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1/13/15 – 11:16 A.M.

A final review of the 2014 budget showed Hancock County is on stable financial footing.  The finalized numbers for the past year showed county revenue was just under $23 million.  Commissioner Phil Riegle says in spite of a slower start to 2014, things turned out well in the end…

Audio: Phil Riegle

Riegle says the economy is improving in the area, which helps the county’s bottom line.

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1/13/15 – 5:34 A.M.

You’ve heard of stray cats and dogs, but a stray pig isn’t quite as common. But that’s what the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office is dealing with. A post on the office’s Facebook page says a pig was found wandering near Putnam County roads Q and 12-Q, northwest of Columbus Grove Sunday morning.

Anyone with information on who might own the pig is aksed to call (419)523-3208.

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1/13/15 – 5:21 A.M.

A new endowed scholarship has been created for Fostoria High School students. The Courier reports three siblings have pledged $15,000 to the district to be used to help kids get a college education. Rick Markoff, Patti LoScudo and Gary Markoff made the donation in honor of their parents, Jack and Carolyn Markoff.

Superintendent Andrew Sprang said the amount of the scholarship will be determined on a yearly basis based on interest rates. The school will start awarding money in the spring of 2015.

Scholarships will be given to students who put forth their best effort in the classroom, demonstrates leadership in activities, and has a financial need.

MORE: The Courier

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1/13/15 – 5:13 A.M.

Progress continues to be made on McComb’s new water tower. The Courier reports the village council was given an update on the project during their Monday meeting. The dome for the 135 foot tall tower was set over the weekend. The new structure will have a 100,000 gallon capacity once it is operational.

Officials believe the tower will go online in June. Electrical work and painting will take place in the spring.

The project is costing the village $835,000.

MORE: The Courier

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1/13/15 – 5:06 A.M.

A man serving a prison sentence for running a drug ring in Ohio is now charged with doing the same thing from prison. The Associated Press reports 50-year-old Fernando Auces is accused with 12 other men of conspiracy to possess, with intent to distribute drugs. Auces was indicted by a Hancock County grand jury on two counts of racketeering in 1998. He’s serving a 20-year prison sentence.

The prison drug ring ran from July of 2010 to August of 2014. Auces and the others are accused of using contraband cellphones to coordinate their efforts. The indictment accuses Auces of organizing the delivery of drugs into Ohio from Indiana and Texas.

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